Volkswagen Ameo Overview
Volkswagen literally means the ‘people’s car’ and we all know how the Beetle revolutionised motoring for millions of people for decades. It was the right car for the right time and at the right price and Volkswagen sold a staggering 21 million cars and we all know how much the Beetle is loved by enthusiasts the world over. Now, what every car company really needs is to make a car that the people really want. If you look around the streets in India, the hatchback seems to be the car that everyone has and the large conventional sedan is the car that everyone wants to own. Now India has the distinct ‘advantage’ of government policy that dictates how cars are made and that brings us to the compact sedan.
With a relatively affordable price tag, it is no wonder that more people than ever are choosing to go with these new-age compact sedans. But what if you want a compact sedan and still want something with a premium badge? Well, Volkswagen has finally heard the pleas of the Indian customer and presented us with the brand-new Ameo. So what is it all about?
Volkswagen Ameo Exteriors
If you are already a fan of the crisp and clear lines of the Polo, chances are you will appreciate what Volkswagen has done to the Ameo. In fact, it took VW around 2 years to develop this car which may seem a lot, given that the Ameo looks pretty much the same as the Polo right from the front till the rear doors. Its only when you move past the rear doors that you recognise the three-box form.
The biggest challenge for Volkswagen was to accommodate a boot-lid onto the Polo which is already a fairly large hatchback, one that just about manages to fall under the crucial 4-metre mark. Naturally, VW had to come up with some pretty radical measures including shaving 35mm off the front bumper to add more sheet metal above the rear overhang. What’s more, the rear portion of the roofline has also been altered for better design flow into the rear glass. For all we know, the Ameo could have turned out to be a slightly different vehicle, as revealed by senior VW designer Tilo Klumpp whose initial drawings were that of a fastback. Volkswagen India execs, however, were only keen to commission the more popular three-box configuration.
The Ameo, then, exudes typical VW styling cues with its neatly designed front-end, taut shoulder lines and flared wheel arches. If you’re wondering about the colour, it’s called Blue Silk. It’s even got those multiple sharp creases right at the bottom for a more streamlined appearance. That said, it falls short of being impressive where it counts i.e. at the rear. Sure the Polo-like taillights are well detailed and look nice and so does the subtly designed spoiler but the lack of muscle on the rear bumper is too glaring to miss. Like most compact sedans that have had their rear ends cut-short to leverage on sub-4 metre excise benefits, the Ameo’s boot is a bit too stubby and the end result just doesn’t cut it.
Volkswagen Ameo Interiors
Compact sedans rarely impress when it comes to interior quality and feel good factor. The Ameo, however, is different. For starters it gets the same interior as the Polo and the Vento which means everything works in a rather precise manner. It’s all very Germanic.
For the price the Ameo can be deemed top-notch, with well-integrated displays and high-quality materials throughout the cabin. Next to the Hyundai Xcent or the Ford Aspire, the Ameo’s cabin does look a bit dull, but when it comes to quality and fit and finish of plastics, the VW is hard to match. The black and beige dual-tone upholstery, beautifully made steering wheel and the rotary switches on the dash, which are solid in feel and operation, all help give the Ameo a genuinely premium feel. Those supremely clear dials are a nice touch too as is the large front armrest.
Sitting high up in the wide and comfortable front seats, visibility outside is good thanks to the thin A-pillar. The front seat themselves are perfectly contoured and offer adequate back and thigh support. As for the rear, things aren’t as impressive since the rear bench is taken straight off the Polo – one of the least spacious hatchbacks around. Couple that with a wheelbase that is unchanged and what follows is a car with the least amount of knee room in its segment. The 330-litre boot is reasonably spacious for day-to-day use but it cannot beat the Honda Amaze (400-litre) or the Hyundai Xcent (407-litre) for capacity. To know more info on Volkswagen Ameo visit Iiit-bh
The Ameo though strikes back big time on equipment. Available in three trim levels, the base Ameo Trendline covers pretty much all the basics, featuring power windows, central locking, tilt and telescopic adjustment for the steering wheel, air-conditioning and turn indicators on wing mirrors. The top-spec Ameo Highline, on the other hand, is loaded to the brim and comes with quite a few segment first features such as cornering lights, rain sensing wipers and cruise control as standard. Besides these, it also gets alloy wheels, rear parking camera with sensors, climate control, rear AC vents, electrically foldable wing mirrors and a touchscreen audio system with steering mounted controls. In terms of safety, Volkswagen is offering ABS and dual airbags as standard across all three trims of the Ameo.
Volkswagen Ameo Engine
Volkswagen has only launched the 1.2-litre petrol engine on the Ameo as of now and that is exactly the version we drove. It’s the same engine that does duty in the Polo as well. The first thing that strikes you about this engine, though, is the fact that it is unusually loud for a petrol engine even when idling. With 75PS of peak power and 110Nm of peak torque, the engine isn’t expected to wow you with neck-snapping acceleration and, frankly, it doesn’t. Low-end power delivery isn’t as smooth as we expected and the Ameo does tend to need more throttle inputs especially if you are on an incline.
The engine does open up post 3000rpm all the way up to the 6000rpm red line but then the engine gets quite loud and intrusive. The gearbox is typically Volkswagen and offers a very good feel both in terms of the way it shifts and in terms of the way it slots into gears. Clutch action is lighter than some of the older Volkswagen cars but still isn’t as light as what you would get in a Hyundai or Maruti product. What the Ameo really needs is the 1.2-litre 4-cylinder TSI motor to make it a potent automobile.
As you would expect, the Volkswagen Ameo is a class apart when it comes to overall chassis balance. Ride quality is a little stiff but then Volkswagen cars have always catered to the customer who preferred handling over ride quality. That said, it is far from uncomfortable and even though the rear seat passengers might be slightly thrown on undulated roads, the driver can power through knowing that the chassis underneath him can take a beating. Steering response is very direct and although we would have loved to see Volkswagen stick to the 16-inch wheels and tyres that the show car had, the production version gets the 15-inch wheels that you get on the Polo.Check car loan for Volkswagen Ameo at Fincarz.
Volkswagen Ameo Riding
The exact performance figures will come in picture once the car starts to spend some time in the actual driving conditions. Until then, we can expect it to offer a comfortable drive even in tough driving conditions. The ABS is definitely a benefit when it comes to handling of the car. The power steering with tilt and telescopic features further make things easier for the driver.
Volkswagen Ameo Safety
Volkswagen Ameo 2016 features ABS as a standard across all variants along with dual front airbags. The Hill Hold Control and front fog lamps are featured in the Comfortline and Highline variants, whereas the rear fog lamps are available across all Volkswagen Ameo variants. The top-end variant, Highline, also features rear defogger, front fog lamps with static cornering lights and an auto-dimming interior rear view mirror. The front wheels have disc brakes to give the car that extra power so that one can handle the car well even in tough situations with ease.
Volkswagen Ameo Cost in Hyderabad
Volkswagen Ameo On Road Price is 8,27,348/- and Ex-showroom Price is 7,00,000/- in Hyderabad. Volkswagen Ameo comes in 5 colours, namely Blue Slik,Candy White,Carbon Steel,Riflex Silver,Toffee Brown. Volkswagen Ameo comes with FWD with 1498 CC Displacement and 4 Cylinders with Maximum Power 108 bhp@4000 rpm and Peak Torque 250 Nm@1500-3000 rpm DRIVE TRAIN FWD and reaches 100 KMPH at N/A . Volkswagen Ameo comes with Manual Transmission with FWD .Check for Ameo price in Hyderabad at Autozhop.
Volkswagen Ameo Conclusion
Our brief time behind the wheel of the Volkswagen Ameo has showed us that this new German offering has plenty of bang-for-buck. Pitched firmly at the likes of the Maruti Suzuki Swift Dzire and the Honda Amaze, the Ameo is surprisingly good value (the petrol powered model is, anyway). In the overall scheme of things though, it will be interesting to see how well VW India plays the pricing card for the upcoming DSG-equipped diesel powered model.
The Ameo may not be as well-rounded and spacious in the back as the Amaze or as sharp to drive as the Figo Aspire, but it does bring to the table plenty of value and a really well put together cabin. Take a spin before you inevitably head towards that Maruti Suzuki dealer, at least.